Graohics Problem

Discussion in 'Desktop & Laptop Computers Forum' started by kelvin, Jan 17, 2005.

  1. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Hey Guys,

    I have an ATI Radeon 9200 SE Graphics Card (128mb) in my machine which is running an XP 3000 and 512mb RAM. I use XP Home with SP2.

    For some reason, whenever I try and run certain online games (this one for exapmple) I run into problems. As soon as the game loads and I click "start", the game appears for a fraction of a second before my monitor switches itself off. The PC stays on, but no matter what I do I can't get the display back without rebooting the machine - i've tried Alt+F4, Ctrl/Alt/Del, you name it but nothing does anything - the monitor stays in standby

    To the best of my knowledge this only occurrs with Shockwave games but it's a bit frustrating. DVD playback is fine (perfect in fact) so i'm fairly sure the graphics card isn't at fault but i'm not sure what else it could be. Could my monitor be the source of the problem?

    K.
     
  2. kelvin

    kelvin
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    :rolleyes:

    Title should read "Graphics problem!

    K.
     
  3. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Any idea's?

    I've downloaded the latest drivers from the ATI website, and have also downloaded the latest version of Direct X from MS as was suggested on another forum.

    I've played about with different refresh rates and resolutions in the hope of isolating the problem to the monitor but have so far not had any joy :(

    I'm open to any ideas you may have!!

    Kelvin.
     
  4. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    OK - other than it's not that good a game (just tried it) and it's in german (which means I can't understand the instructions either) - what browser are you opening it up in?

    I'm running XP Pro SP2 and I checked it in IE (I've got Opera and Firefox installed) and it worked fine. It's not doing anything clever - it just opens up in the browser and worked. So maybe it's a browser issue over a graphics issue ??
     
  5. kelvin

    kelvin
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    My default browser is Firefox but I *think* I also tried in IE to rule out a browser error - I will check again though just to be sure.

    Thanks for the reply...

    K.
     
  6. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    Any luck, I ask out of curiosity ?
     
  7. kelvin

    kelvin
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    My apologies for not updating this thread sooner - it had completely slipped my mind...

    Just tried with IE and didn't have any real joy (the problem still exists), but the symptoms are slightly different - rather than plunging my monitor into standby as was the case with Firefox, the game froze, and then the machine cycled through what appeared to be a number of different screen modes - not changes in resolution, but possibly refresh rates.

    The changes were subtle, but each time the display reappeared I noted that the corners/edges of the screen were slightly different (as if pincushion/trapezoid adjustments were being made). After doing this about 3/4 times, the display seemed to reset itself before showing an ATI error message to the effect that it was unable to recover settings. I was prompted to restart the PC (which I didn't), and the game then ran (albeit like a dog).

    I have no idea what exactly happened!

    I'll try to replicate the problem and take note of the error message.

    Kelvin.
     
  8. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Grrr...

    Just tried again using IE and it responded just as Firefox did - straight into standby once the game had loaded :(

    It's not a major thing I know but it is damned annoying - I have a good spec PC that does everything I want it to, when I want it to, except this!!

    Frustrating :(

    K.
     
  9. stripe

    stripe
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    What screen resolution, colour depth and refresh rate are you running?
     
  10. stripe

    stripe
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    Oh and by the way it is a dreadful game!
     
  11. kelvin

    kelvin
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    I know it's a dreadful game - i'm just using it to illustrate the problems i'm having - I experience the same thing on other Shockwave games too :)

    Currently running 1024 x 768 @ 75mhz. Colour is set at the highest level IIRC (32bit??)... I'm at work at the minute so can't check but i'm 99% certain those are correct.

    K.
     
  12. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    To be honest, it really sounds like a most bizarre problem - don't suppose you've got a different gfx card kicking about ?

    What version of Shockwave is running - When I went to the site, I had to install version 10 - maybe it's that if it's only Shockwave stuff ?
     
  13. kelvin

    kelvin
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    I fully agree - i'm at a total loss as to the cause of the problem. I've never come across anything quite like it :(

    Shockwave player should be the latest release as I only built the PC 2 weeks ago - i'm just downloading it again now though so we'll see...

    K.
     
  14. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Nope :(

    I have to say though that the response is a little erratic - at times, the monitor simply goes into standby requiring a reboot, other times it does it's "cycle thing", and occasionally it simply cuts out, comes back on, and hangs :(

    The end result is the same though - I need to do a reboot to rectify everything :(

    God this is annoying!

    K.
     
  15. KraGorn

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    I'm pretty clueless too, but the message "unable to recover settings" smells strongly of a hardware corruption on the AGP bus .. I'm assuming it's VPU recovery that's failed, about which I know precious little. I don't mean a hardware fault, more like hardware registers being programmed with corrupt/garbage values causing a temporary malfunction.

    The monitor going AWOL and other glitches would also be explained by bus problems, when you reboot of course everything gets soft reset and things clear up.

    I've no solution to offer I'm afraid, there's so many bits and pieces interacting here, the graphics drivers, the DirectX system, Shockwave itself and other bits and pieces ... maybe it's nature's way of saying junk Shockwave. :)
     
  16. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    Hmmmm long (really long) shot - changing the AGP Aperture (Not sure if that's the spelling - too tired and too lazy to check) size - in theory you can have it set equal to your Ram - but the default size is 64 IIRC. If it's 128 knock it down to 64, if 64 give 32 a shot.......
     
  17. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Thanks (again!) for the replies - altering the AGP Aperture didn't help i'm afraid Sadmuppet.

    Kragorn, am I relatively safe in assuming do you think, that it's not a hardware fault? If i'm honest this is my main concern as should this be the case, then i'd rather return the suspect item(s) while I still can. If it is just a software issue then i'm not too worried about living with it (despite it being a little annoying!) - Shockwave use is pretty negligible for me :)

    If possible I think i'd just like to gain some sort of assurance that it's not a major issue, and it's not going to rear it's head under any other conditions (although I expect this may be impossible to guarantee!) :)

    K.
     
  18. KraGorn

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    Well in cases like this of course there's always chance it's a hardware fault, however if the only time you see problems is when you're playing Shockwave material then it's far more likely to be either a bug in Shockwave itself or else a bad interaction between it and the graphics rendering layer, DirectX and/or the graphics drivers.

    Do you play any games on the machine? What about playing DVDs, AVIs etc.? The more graphics-intensive jobs you do without incident the more the evidence would point to Shockwave.

    You could try downloading one of the popular 3D benchmark programs, 3DMark2003 or whatever is currently in vogue, not for the purpose of getting any numbers but simply put it into 'continuous' mode and let it run over night. If you don't experience any problems after several hours I think you can be reasonably certain it is purely a software glitch.
     
  19. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    I'd agree that it's software - it could equally be something else you have loaded interfering with Shockwave et al that's unrelated. You've said that you play DVD's using it quite merrily, so I think it's safe to say that hardware wise is fine.

    You could change the hardware acceleration in Windows down from maximum to the next bar etc to see if it helps. Personally, I'd ignore shockware totally and chalk it up to a piece of software your PC doesn't like (I'm always of the opinion that not every piece of software will run on every PC).

    If you really have to have it and no tweak will work as such, then I would ditch the graphics card and get something a bit more current technology (not saying go grab a £300 X800 or Nvidia). Truthfully, you really aren't missing anything though :)
     
  20. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Thanks again for the replies guys - you've been very helpful :)
     
  21. kelvin

    kelvin
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    Thought i'd add a bit of an update to this since I appear to have found a solution to the problem :)

    I discovered after my last post that I wasn't the only person experiencing this problem. I also found that the problem wasn't solely restricted to Shockwave but also to certain games (Medal of Honor: AA being a good example) which was likely to cause me more of a problem.

    To cut a long story short, I came across a thread on another forum which (after experimenting with various settings and pieces of software), came to the conclusion that the problem lay in an incompatability between the ATI catalyst drivers and the VIA chipset drivers present on some motherboards. The findings were reported to ATI some time ago and the result was that the issue was resolved in the 5.1 Catalyst release :)

    Downloaded it a few days ago and everything is now working fine :) :)

    Kelvin.
     
  22. Seth Gecko

    Seth Gecko
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    Ahhhhhhhh VIA chipset issue - Not that I needed reinforcement to never ues their chipset, but another reason nonetheless.

    Glad it's all sorted - but the game still sux :laugh:
     
  23. kelvin

    kelvin
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    :laugh:

    At least now I can judge for myself :laugh:
     

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